U.S. Stock Futures Give Back Ground Following Disappointing ADP Report

wallstreet july16 03mar21 lt

After pointing to a notable rebound by the markets earlier this morning, stocks futures have recently shown a notable pullback. The futures are currently pointing to a roughly flat open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by just 12 points.

The pullback by the futures came following the release of a report from payroll processor ADP showing much weaker than expected private sector job growth in the month of February.

ADP said private sector employment rose by 117,000 jobs in February after climbing by an upwardly revised 195,000 jobs in January.

Economists had expected employment to increase by 177,000 jobs compared to the addition of 174,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

"The labor market continues to post a sluggish recovery across the board," said Nela Richardson, ADP's chief economist. "We're seeing large-sized companies increasingly feeling the effects of COVID-19, while job growth in the goods producing sector pauses."

She added "With the pandemic still in the driver's seat, the service sector remains well below its pre-pandemic levels; however, this sector is one that will likely benefit the most over time with reopenings and increased consumer confidence."

On Friday, the Labor Department is scheduled to release its more closely watched monthly employment report, which includes both public and private sector jobs.

Earlier, the markets seemed poised to benefit from optimism about the coronavirus vaccine rollouts after President Joe Biden said Tuesday the U.S. will have enough vaccine supply for every adult in America by the end of May.

Biden cited the emergency use authorization issued for Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ) vaccine as well as a collaboration between J&J and Merck (MRK) to expand production of the single-dose vaccine.

"When I came into office, the prior administration had contracted for not nearly enough vaccine to cover adults in America. We rectified that," Biden said. "About three weeks ago, we were able to say that we'll have enough vaccine supply for adults by the end of July.

He added, "And I'm pleased to announce today, as a consequence of the stepped-up process that I've ordered and just outlined, this country will have enough vaccine supply — I'll say it again — for every adult in America by the end of May. By the end of May. That's progress — important progress."

Shortly after the start of trading, the Institute for Supply Management is scheduled to release its report on service sector activity in the month of February.

The ISM's services PMI is expected to come in unchanged at 58.7, with a reading above 50 indicating growth in the service sector.

Later in the day, the Federal Reserve is due to release its Beige Book, a compilation of economic evidence from the twelve Fed districts.

Stocks moved mostly lower over the course of the trading day on Tuesday, partly offsetting the rally seen on Monday. The major averages all moved to the downside, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq showing a particularly steep drop.

The major averages came under pressure going into the close, ending the day just off their lows of the session. The Dow fell 143.99 points or 0.5 percent to 31,391.52, the Nasdaq tumbled 230.04 points or 1.7 percent to 13,358.79 and the S&P 500 slid 31.53 points or 0.8 percent to 3,870.29.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Wednesday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index rose by 0.5 percent, while China's Shanghai Composite Index surged up by 2 percent.

The major European markets have also moved to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index is up by 0.4 percent, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index are both up by 0.3 percent.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are climbing $0.70 to $60.45 a barrel after sliding $0.89 to $59.75 a barrel on Tuesday. Meanwhile, an ounce of gold is trading at $1,713.50, down $20.10 compared to the previous session's close of $1,733.60. On Tuesday, gold rose $10.60.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 106.87 yen compared to the 106.69 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Tuesday. Against the euro, the dollar is trading at $1.2050 compared to yesterday's $1.2091.

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